© 2024 WUTC
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Open Book with Louise Kennedy

Talking with Mary Louise Kelly on All Things Considered about her relatively late start as a writer, the Irish novelist Mary Louise Kennedy told her “…it was really late, I suppose. I mean, I think people have maybe started later, but, I mean, I was pretty much bundled into a car and brought to a writing group when I was 47. And it wasn't that I never wanted to write. I think when I was about 7 or 8 I thought that I'd like to write, but that just didn't happen. And I probably had got it into my head that it was something for, like, magical people - you know? - that you had to be, like, a really special person and that I wasn't like that. So, you know, why would I be writing?

So I think that when I did sit down to try and write, something - I really felt that something had adjusted in me. And it wasn't that I thought, oh, you know, it's going to be a new job or something or a career. I never thought anybody'd read it. I never thought anybody'd ever pay me to do it. But I just felt better somehow, which is kind of weird. I don't always feel better now, but certainly the first day I sat down, it was really, strangely liberating or something. I don't know.

Her first novel, just published, titled Trespasses has received universally enthusiastic reviews. A reviewer for The New York Times Book Review called it “brilliant, beautiful, heartbreaking.” In The Washington Post, a reviewer wrote, “Kennedy has written a captivating first novel that manages to be beautiful and devastating in equal measure.”